STARKVILLE – Travis Daniels failed to qualify academically for the fall semester but was dressed in maroon Mississippi State warm-ups on the Bulldogs’ bench Thursday night against Florida Gulf Coast.
“He’s on the bench so he’s good to go,” said MSU head coach Rick Ray. “He’s been admitted and we’re going to get him a physical so he can start practicing with us.”
Daniels passed the one class he needed to enroll at Mississippi State and is qualified to play in the spring. He will begin practicing with the team on Dec. 28 when the team returns from the Las Vegas Classic this weekend but will be redshirt this season.
“If he was an incoming freshman I’d probably play him,” Ray said. “But I think it’s totally unfair for me to take a junior college guy who only has two years to play in the first place and only give him a year and a half. I think that’s unfair to him and I want to make sure I’m always doing right by these kids.”
The 6-foot-8, 205-pound native of Russellville, Ala. signed with MSU last November before leading Shelton State to the Alabama Community College Conference Championship. Daniels averaged 11.9 points and 7.2 rebounds a game as a sophomore.
Daniels also had scholarship offers from Southern Miss, Western Kentucky and Wichita State.
“Travis is a young man that can dribble, pass, and shoot,” Ray said. “It seems simple but not many players at his size can do all three equally well. He is a jack of all trades that can play multiple positions and affect the game in many ways. Travis has a good basketball IQ and that will serve our team well.”
Daniels’ addition will give the Bulldogs a front court next year consisting of Gavin Ware, Roquez Johnson, Fallou Ndoye and Oliver Black.